• Taste of Mexico Cover

Month: May 2015

Raúl Ortega | Mariscos Jalisco

Mariscos Jalisco truck is the quintessential street food of Los Angeles: a folded-over fried taco that is filled with a filling of veggies and chopped shrimp (think of a crispy potato taco but with shrimp) smothered in a zesty tomato salsa aromatic with oregano, and then a sliver of ripe avocado.

The man behind Mariscos Jalisco’s truck is no other than Raul Ortega, a native from San Juan de Los Lagos in Jalisco. Raul is not only an expert at Mariscos, he started his taco career selling tacos de cabeza in San Juan de los Lagos’ Plaza de Armas, he eventually moved to Boyle Heights in 1983, which led him to open Mariscos Jalisco in 2002.

Raul’s Tacos de Camarón are simple joy, but a joy that warrants many high-profile Los Angeles chefs and people from out of town to make the trek to Boyle Heights just to devour an entire plate of these tacos. The truck also does seafood cocktails overflowing with plump, freshly shucked oysters and tender sliced octopus in a chilled tomato-seafood broth. But don’t take the chefs’ word for just how good the stuff is, take the locals’ word, who frequent the place every minute, even at the 9 a.m. opening.

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Connie Cossio & Segio Peñuelas | Coni’Seafood

Pescado Sarandeado is freshly-caught, charred whole fish and it is the official dish of Mexican beaches. That is, until Connie Cosio, originally from Acaponeta, Nayarit, and Sergio Peñuelas, from Los Mochis, Sinaloa, opened Coni’Seafood in Los Angeles and brought the emblematic coastal Mexican dish to the city of Angels, and dare we say that it tastes just as good as enjoying it under a few palm trees on a hammock?

The secret is a simple one: their dedication to sourcing the absolute best quality seafood. For starters, their fish of choice for this preparation is snook fish, a medium-flake fish that retains its meatiness through the grilling process and doesn’t have as many pesky bones as other fish. To finish this seafood feast, there is a pile of umami-intensive caramelized onions that add an extra layer of unforgettable flavor to your DIY fish tacos.

If the sarandeado is that good, you can imagine how good their ceviche preparations are. Including a variation of a ceviche that they offer on their botana side of the menu, called tostaditos. Which, is essentially freshly fried flaky tostadas piled high with chopped raw shrimp, tender octopus and sea snails and a little creamy marlin pate to round out the richness.

Then, there is chef Peñuelas’s deftness with shrimp. Which, may or may not include a simple sauté of camarones borrachos, a simple dish properly cooked shrimp swimming in a tangy, tequila-heavy spicy sauce.

Conveniently located a few miles away from LAX, this restaurant and the friendly staff is the perfect welcoming experience for any family or friends coming from out of town, or, a good pit stop to let the uncontrollable Los Angeles traffic settle down while being a good friend and picking up your friend at the airport. Especially, with a couple of their micheladas in hand.

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Jimmy & Andy Shaw | Torta, Co

Jimmy & Andy Shaw

If you’re like us, then you have a soft spot for tortas. Whether is in the form of molletes for breakfast or a Cubana for a quick, late-night dinner.

Thanks to Jimmy Shaw—the man behind Lotería Grill—and his brother Andy, your dream of eating tortas all day, every day is now an easy reality. The Shaw brothers brought their torta inspiration from their native Mexico City to downtown Los Angeles with Torta Company, the sandwich sister of Lotería Grill.

Torta, Co. opened in January 2014 and its already established a cult following with the downtown crowd. There is a torta for everyone, from torta de milanesa de res (breaded beef cutlet), alambre (Sirloin Tips, Bacon, Poblano Peppers, Jack Cheese, Black Beans, Avocado, Jalapeño Sauce) and the famous La Cubana (Breaded Chicken Breast, Black Forest Ham, White Cheddar, Black Beans, Tomato, Avocado, Onion, Chipotle Mayo, Cilantro dressing).

If you feel like having breakfast at any point of the day, fret no more. Torta Company has you covered with their chilaquiles en salsa verde and chicken milanesa torta, with a spread of black Beans, crema Mexicana, queso Fresco, onion and cilantro. Combining tortillas with their crusty and freshly baked telera bread never tasted this good.

Join the torta cult following, visit Torta, Co!


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